Nowadays, a growing number of women are starting their own companies. All that success is wonderful. However many women-owned businesses face a number of challenges when trying to obtain business funding.
According to Entrepreneur, “women entrepreneurs run 30% of all small businesses, and together employ 7.9 million people and generate $1.4 trillion in sales (as of 2015)”.
However, small business loans submitted by women are approved 33% less often than men.
What are small business loans for Women?
A business loan gives entrepreneurs access to capital to create or expand their businesses. Whether you have a new business or you want to expand your existing operation or purchase raw material for your production, a business loan could be right for you.
There are plenty of institutions and organizations that specialize in supporting female-owned businesses through grants and small business loans for women.
In the following section of this article, we’ll talk more specifically about 3 different organizations that support women entrepreneurs.
1. Amber Grant
Amber Grants began in 1998 to honour the memory of a young female entrepreneur, Amber Wigdahl, who died in 1981 at the age of 19.
The grant doesn’t fociuses in any one sector or industry, and women can apply online.
They read through and follow-up grant applications monthly and select approximately 5 finalists. At the end of each month, they discuss each finalist and vote to select a winner who receives a $2,000 Amber Grant.
Female-owned small businesses selected for a $2,000 Amber Grant are automatically eligible for their annual $25,000 Amber Grant, which is awarded at the end of the year to one of the 12 monthly winners.
The Tory Burch Foundation is a nonprofit organization focused on supporting the empowerment of women entrepreneurs in the United States.
Tory Burch launched her business in 2004. As her company has grown, she’s learned about the challenges that women in business face. That’s why she created, in 2009, the Tory Burch Foundation.
Their Capital program with Bank of America offers access to affordable loans for women entrepreneurs in the United States, through Community Lenders, also known as Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs).
They have also a partnership with Goldman Sachs’s 10,000 Small Businesses program and provide women small-business owners with business and management education.
The program is designed for women entrepreneurs with a sustainable business, a good credit score, at least two years in business and a passion for growth.
How does it work?
The Foundation currently doesn’t provide grants to business owners; they just connect women entrepreneurs with appropriate Community Lenders in their region. The lenders then determine eligibility and provide affordable loans, which come from their Capital program with Bank of America.
Since launching in 2014, the Girlboss Foundation has awarded over $130,000 in financial grants to women entrepreneurs in the United States. Girlboss Foundation grants are exclusive to creative females in the worlds of design, fashion, music, and the arts in the United States.
Each grant beneficiary receives project funding for $15,000, plus exposure through the Girlboss platform and community.
Applying for a grant from the Girlboss Foundation Grant is very simple. Women entrepreneurs just need to send a video highlighting their portfolio, a business plan, a link to their website and all the information that they feel could help in obtaining a grant.
It’s your time to be a successful female entrepreneur
So, if you’re an entrepreneur and funding is a challenge for your business, applying for a business grant could be the quickest and easiest way to find the solution.
Which one will you apply for?